Safety Antonio Conner Ruled Academically Eligible, Tight End A.J. Jackson Ruled Ineligible

Kelly Lambert-USA TODAY Sports

We've got good news and we've got bad news.

Antonio Conner, one of the most heralded Hugh Freeze signees for the 2013 recruiting class and the top prospect from the state of Mississippi this past year, is eligible to enroll at Ole Miss per Scout.com's Ben Garrett. Conner is from Magnolia State powerhouse South Panola High School, where he played as a safety, receiver, quarterback, and really any other position that could have benefited from his ideal frame, speed, and grit. Rated as a five star prospect and the number three safety in the country by Scout, Conner had offers from Alabama, LSU, Georgia, and really any reputable program in the nation.

He also did this on ESPNU after publicly committing to the Rebs on National Signing Day:

Obviously, we're Tony Conner fans. We anticipate he will contribute right away on the Rebel defense, whether it be at one of the traditional safety spots or at the hybrid safety/linebacker "Husky" position in Dave Wommack's 4-2-5 defense.

But this eligibility update isn't all good news. Arshad "A.J." Jackson of Hampton, Georgia, a 6'6" 240lb tight end prospect, will not be academically eligible to enroll at Ole Miss this fall. This is a pretty big blow, as Jackson would have likely contributed early and often. Tight end is a position that the Rebels are worse than thin at. Currently, former walk-on Jack Nuismer (who?) is listed as the starter. Behind him are, presumably, freshmen Evan Engram and Christian Morgan, the latter of which missed spring drills due to a meniscus tear. Hugh Freeze's offense best suits athletic, flexible tight ends which are versatile as receivers but can block linebackers and defensive backs on the perimeter when called upon. With Jackson's size, he would have been an ideal fit for this style of play.

Congrats are in order for Conner, and best of luck to Jackson, who will presumably enroll in a prep school or junior college in order to gain NCAA eligibility for the future.

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